Today I traveled north, small small. I went to Kpong and Odumase in the northern part of my region, the Eastern Region to buy beads and visit Cedi Bead Industries. My next post will be what I learned there, how to make glass beads, but first I want to share my enthusiasm about traveling in Ghana.
Yes, I have often wondered if the rusty jalopy with the spiderweb of cracks in the windshield and the rocking seats would make it down the 3km road to my site. OK, the roads are often worse than a Maine back road full of frost heaves. And sure sometimes I have had to wait in the hot sun, more than an hour for a tro tro to fill but the people are what makes it wonderful. The following three things happened to me today when I was traveling.
I was getting off the tro tro in Kpong. My bag was big and heavy and I was struggling in the cramped quarters of the tro tro. The Ghanaian women, about my age, who was sitting in front of me, chastised the tro mate in Twi. He came right in took my bag and then helped me down the high step off the tro. I don’t know what she said but I did recognize the tone!
Later I was standing by the side of the road, waiting for transportation to take me to Dan’s bead, just outside of Kpong. A man asked me where I was going. When I told him he said I should go to the station because I would get a car faster. As I was crossing the street he shouted at me to come back. He had a share taxi that was going in that direction.
After I visited Dan’s beads I was again waiting by the side of the road for transport. There were also 4 men and a small child. Tro after tro went by us and didn’t stop because they were full. At last an empty taxi stopped. I hung back because the men were there first but they all piled in the back seat of this subcompact vehicle and urged me to sit in front. I made “I can’t possibly let you all sit in the back seat noises’ and shook my head but they insisted. They were so scrunched that when I looked back to thank them again I couldn’t tell what arms went with what person.
I am gonna miss Ghana!